Sunday, February 28, 2010

Two reader requests: 12.04.05 and 11.07.96

Here we have a pair of mid-'90s nuggets. Both are requests: one from the request page and another from a reader on a different board.

12.04.95 Mullins Center, Amherst MA page

Set 1: Julius, Gumbo, The Divided Sky, Punch You In the Eye, Stash, My Mind's Got a Mind of its Own, Axilla (Part II), The Horse > Silent in the Morning, Hello My Baby, While My Guitar Gently Weeps

Set 2: Timber (Jerry), Sparkle, Ya Mar, Run Like an Antelope, Billy Breathes, Cars Trucks Buses, You Enjoy Myself, Sample in a Jar, Frankenstein

Encore: Bouncing Around the Room, Rocky Top

v0 mp3 .zip file

As with most/all pre-'97 shows, Mike is pretty low in the mix, and it has that unmistakable 1995 sound to it...hard to describe, but Fishman seems loud in the mix, especially the snare. Anyhoo, on top of the usual EQ tweakage I moved the stereo image a bit more center and raised the volume a bit. This is an AKG 460B/ck61 pull.

11.07.96 Rupp Arena, Lexington KY page

Set 1: Chalk Dust Torture, Weigh > Rift > Guelah Papyrus, Stash, Waste, Guyute, Free > Tela, Character Zero[1]

Set 2: Suzy Greenberg > Bathtub Gin -> Hold Your Head Up > Bike > Hold Your Head Up, You Enjoy Myself

Encore: Frankenstein

[1] No ending vocal jam.

Notes: Character Zero was performed without the ending vocal jam. Fishman humorously stumbled through Bike, which was played by request.

v0 mp3 .zip file

This Nakamichi CM300 & PZM 30D mix was super quiet and left of center. Also, for a show where Mike slayed it was a shame for him to be so low in the mix. I brought the low end up quite a bit so his presence could be appreciated more. He doesn't sound '97 all of a sudden, but there's definitely more low end than the original source.

That's the tricky thing about trying to bring more Mike into the mix when there wasn't much to begin with: if you raise the low frequencies on the EQ too much, sure, you might be able to hear Mike better but it sometimes overdoes the rest of the mix with too much bass. Can't really isolate the instruments in the same fashion as one could if you were at the actual soundboard.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Reader Request Double-Shot: 9.22.99 and 9.29.99

OK folks, I will be taking a short break from '99 after these two. As much as I'd love to remaster this whole tour, I need to get some variety going out of fairness to those who may not dig this period as much as I do. But these are two SICK shows! These were requested on another board, before I created the new request page.

9.22.99 Pan Am Center, Las Cruces NM (including hilarious SBD soundcheck) show page

Soundcheck: Dickie Scotland Song, Dirt (several times, not included in this download)

Set 1: Also Sprach Zarathustra > Chalk Dust Torture, Guelah Papyrus, Axilla, My Mind's Got a Mind of its Own, Beauty of My Dreams, Bathtub Gin, Mozambique, Sand, Waste

Set 2: Gotta Jibboo, Ghost > Taste, Brian and Robert, Mike's Song > Simple > Train Song, Weekapaug Groove

Encore: La Grange

Notes: The soundcheck featured the impromptu Dickie Scotland Song in reference to Phish Tour Manager Richard “Dickie Scotland” Glasgow, who attended New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. The song included a theme about the school’s mascot, the Aggie, and referenced fellow NMSU alumnus David “ZZYZX” Steinberg (a.k.a. The Timer) with the lyric ‘Timer is an Aggie, too.’” This debut performance was included in Kevin Shapiro’s “From the Archives” radio show at Big Cypress.

v0 mp3 .zip file

(*TECHNICAL NOTE* - The file for Simple appears to have a glitch. At the 4:42 mark, there is skipping for about 10-15 seconds. At first I thought it was just my file that had become corrupt during encoding/decoding, but I have confirmed with someone else that the original SHN from the etree seed has the skipping also, so it's not just mine. I'm surprised there is no mention of this on the db page. If anyone has a fix out there, please post the link to the comments page in this post, and I will upload a fixed Simple file if it exists. Thanks!

The most glaring issue of the original FOB Schoeps mk4v source was, unfortunately, one of the most significant aspects of the show: the 2001 opener. The taper's levels were extremely low for the first couple minutes, and he continued to fluctuate the volume upwards about 5 times throughout the track, eventually setting down around the 6:00 mark or so. This made for a fairly frustrating listen, constantly having to adjust the volume so your ears don't explode (which might happen anyway after listening to this opener).

I listened for the moments where the levels changed, cut the track into different sections based on those time markers, and tried my best to even out the volume for each section. You may notice split-seconds were there is still a slight volume change, but I can assure you it's not nearly as drastic as it was before. I should also note that although the volume has been "corrected" for the first several minutes of the track, the overall dynamic range and clarity doesn't fully kick in until around the 6:00 mark. All in all, I think you'll find it an improved listening experience.

I've also included the hilarious soundcheck in SBD. Don't miss it. And as I will continue to do, I have included a sample track from the original source in case you want to do a before-and-after comparison.

9.29.99 The Pyramid, Memphis TN show page

Set 1: Runaway Jim > Free, Driver, Taste, Dirt, Nellie Kane, Stash[1] > Theme From the Bottom, Tweezer Reprise

Set 2: Gotta Jibboo > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Down with Disease, Billy Breathes, Back on the Train, Mike's Song[2] -> Catapult -> Mike's Song -> Kung -> Mike's Song > I Didn't Know > Weekapaug Groove

Encore: Cities[3]

[1] Can’t Turn You Loose and Happy Birthday teases.
[2] Who Knows tease.
[3] Altered lyrics.

Notes: Stash included Can’t Turn You Loose and Happy Birthday (to Trey) teases. After Stash, Trey announced a contest where the winner would receive four tickets and backstage passes to any show in the next year and, jokingly, a date with Fishman. The question centered on what all of the songs played in the first set, with the exception of Driver, had in common. The answer was that all songs were in the Key of D. Cities was an appropriate choice as an encore for Memphis, and Trey altered the lyrics a bit for the occasion. Mike’s included a Who Knows tease.

v0 mp3 .zip file

As opposed to the 9.22 show, there were no such level adjustment quirks I could find in this Schoeps mk4v recording, so that made it a pretty easy remaster. The source, as has been mentioned in various places, is pretty bass-heavy and missing some clarity in the high end. A few simple EQ tweaks improved that considerably, and I gave the preamp a boost since the source was relatively quiet.

Don't miss the Cities encore where the crowd erupts after "Did I forget to mention, forget to mention Memphis? Home of Elvis and Rendezvous Barbeque!"

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Remaster request page

I've been starting to get some requests, so I figured I would simplify the process by adding a request page. Just click on the "comment" tab at the bottom of this post and leave your request there. You can technically request auds of shows that have been released in SBD by LivePhish, but I will be prioritizing those pretty low. If you want a specific source remastered, please give me the etree shnid number (or source lineage and I'll figure it out).

I won't be able to satisfy all requests of course, but I'll look for multiple requests to help decide. Only limiting factor is whether I have a lossless copy of the show (I have probably 80% of all shows). If the only source I have of a particular show is in rough quality, I will do what I can to improve it and will give a little disclaimer that it might not be quite up to snuff compared w/ the other remasters of my choosing.

For reference, you can reach this page quickly in the future by clicking on the "request page" tab in the upper right-hand column of the home page. Thanks!

p.s. - I'm sure to the dismay of the '99 haters and those hoping for a little more variety in terms of years, I will be shortly uploading a couple remaster requests I've gotten recently: 9.22.99 Las Cruces and 9.29.99 Memphis. I swear, after those I will take a break from '99 as well as a brief hold on the "Roof-less Shed Series" and post a show from each of the following years: '97, '96, '95, and so on going backwards. So you might have the quickest luck with requests from those years, hint hint...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Roof-less Shed Series, Vol. 2: 9.21.99 Pima County Fairgrounds, Tucson, AZ show page

Set 1: Poor Heart >  Sample in a Jar, Split Open and Melt, Drowned, I Didn't Know, Back on the Train, Birds of a Feather, Theme From the Bottom, Golgi Apparatus

Set 2: Carini > Bug, Strange Design, Vultures -> Limb By Limb, Will It Go Round in Circles?, Dirt, Run Like an Antelope

Encore: Reba, Bold As Love

v0 mp3 .zip file

*SOURCE FYI* - The taper was adjusting levels during Poor Heart. It is very quiet and devoid of bass until about 0:55. For the next couple minutes the sound goes all the way to one side, then the levels get too hot and introduce some distortion, and finally things settle down by the end of the track. Things stay constant for the rest of the show.


*UPDATE* - I am now including in each remaster's folder a track from the original, pre-remaster source so you can compare. I figure some people would be interested in hearing before-and-afters. I will choose a short track (in this case, Sample) so it won't take up much space, and I will place the track in a separate folder so it won't be confused with the rest of the files. Feel free to delete them after checking them out, it's up to you! I'll be doing this going forward; as for the remasters I've already done, I will try soon to make and upload a single folder that contains a track from each of those shows, pre-remaster. In order for me to go back and add the files to each show's existing folder, I would have to re-zip and re-upload every show and re-do all the links. No thanks!


OK folks, I think you will be very happy with the result here. First off, I know I usually try not to comment on the music itself much, but I can't help it in this case: I love this show. Perhaps my favorite of the tour, and there aren't even any real mind-bending type II excursions. It's just so well played, and they sound so...liquid in this show. I mean, a killer SOAM + Drowned as the third and fourth songs of the first set? Please. A beautiful Theme with some absolutely soaring guitar work from Big Red. And you Vultures fans who haven't heard this version yet...just make sure you have a pair of fresh drawers for after you listen to this one. Top it off with a sick, long Antelope and an encore of REBA + Bold As Love?!? I quit.

Then there's the sound quality of this FOB Schoeps mkv4 pull, which is outstanding after playing around with the frequencies a little. Unaltered, it is heavy heavy on the bass, and seriously muffled on the high end. After cleaning it up I think you'll appreciate the clarity, while still leaving enough thump in Fish's kick and Mike's bass. This is one of those FOBs where Mike's tone doesn't have the tangible contours and percussiveness it often has when the mics are further back, but instead projects an oozing warmth that is hard to hear one minute, then massages your auditory canal the next. Butter.

For a good laugh, during the spacey outtro from Carini, at exactly the 9:18 mark you can hear a guy to the right of the mic go "I'm so high...". Classic.

This one really exemplifies the purpose of this "Roof-less Shed Series": From what I've heard and can see from the above shot, this place was nothing more than a stage at the end of a field under the Arizona sky. Not even a back wall behind the stage (like Coors and Sandstone). You can just hear how clearly the notes and voices pierce the air. I can't imagine how cool it must have been to be at such a remote, random show.


p.s. - don't forget I've added a "show index" tab on the upper right-hand corner of the home page, which takes you to a chronological list of all remasters.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Roof-less Shed Series, Vol.1: Coors Amphitheater, Chula Vista CA

*Click on show dates to be taken to show page w/ setlist and other info

9/18/99 - Schoeps CMC6 + mk41 (etree shnid 9894)

Set 1: Tweezer, Roses Are Free > Wilson > Maze, Brian and Robert, Tube > Rocky Top

Set 2: Boogie On Reggae Woman, Meatstick > Free > Bouncing Around the Room, Harry Hood > Frankenstein > Cavern

Encore: Contact > Tweezer Reprise

v0 mp3 .zip file


10/4/00 - Schoeps CMC6 + mk41 (etree shnid 100208)

Set 1: The Moma Dance  > It's Ice, Bouncing Around the Room > Funky Bitch, Reba, Dog Faced Boy, Run Like an Antelope[1]

Set 2: Rock and Roll > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Sample in a Jar, Gotta Jibboo, Bug > Harry Hood > Cavern

Encore: Loving Cup

[1] Included a reference to Bob Weaver instead of Marco Esquandolas.

v0 mp3 .zip file


7/8/03 - Schoeps cmxy4v (etree shnid 18417)

Set 1: Guyute, Horn, My Sweet One > Tweezer, Limb By Limb, Fast Enough for You, Frankie Says, Taste

Set 2: Down with Disease, Vultures, Secret Smile[1], Harry Hood[2], Carini, Discern[1], Waste

Encore: Bouncing Around the Room, Tweezer Reprise

[1] Phish debut.
[2] Magilla tease from Page.

v0 mp3 .zip file


Hope y'all enjoy the first offering of this series. As you can probably tell from the list of venues in the post below, the lion's share of the shows in this series will fall in the '98 - '03 time frame. I promise I will eventually remaster some older stuff, but I've been really digging the '97-'00 period lately so I wanted to embark upon a project that would delve into shows from that time. I'm also looking forward to the fact that some of these shows are likely considered under the radar and haven't been heard much by a good amount of phans.

As usual I'm not going to review or comment much on the shows themselves, since I try to leave that open to interpretation. You can always consult the review pages (they haven't migrated all the old reviews to the updated site yet but they give a link for the older text reviews, in case you want to dig into that).

I'm also going to skip the technical analysis for now; if you've been following the blog you should have a pretty good idea of my methods and what I try to do to "clean up" each source. If you have any questions or feedback feel free to post in the comments page.


p.s. I've added a "show index" link on the upper right-hand column to make it easier/faster to get to the show pages for downloading purposes.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Coming soon: The Roof-less Shed Series

This upcoming series of remasters was inspired by none other than Mr. Miner from His post yesterday theorized which sheds the band could and should play this summer. He made mention of something I have noticed too, namely that the (relatively scarce) outdoor venues that have no roof covering the front part of the crowd (and tapers) allow for that big, open sound untainted by the echo-like reverb and loss in clarity you can get from the usual overhangs. That's not to say the sound isn't awesome at many an amphitheater, it's just different. I also feel like doing this project because it's making me think of warmer summer days...a nice escape from the bleak reality of winter in New England.

I will present remasters, one by one (or perhaps venue by venue) from venues such as the following:

Coors Amphitheater, Chula Vista CA
Sandstone Amphitheater, Bonner Springs KS
Portland Meadows, Portland OR
Pima County Fairgrounds, Tuczon AZ
Ventura County Fairgrounds, Ventura CA

and possibly others. Of course, these aren't all sheds per se; some are just fields with a stage at one end (Pima). The point being an outdoor gig with no roof over the crowd.

I hope to have the first one up next Tuesday (my day off during the week).
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